The ancient Indian practice of Yoga and Yogic Breathing has innumerable health benefits but did you know it is also very beneficial for Asthma patients? Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disorder which affects more than 300 million people around the world. With no specific cure, treatment depends upon reducing the frequency of Attacks and recognising and avoiding ‘triggers’. The symptoms of Asthma patients such as tightening of chest, shortness of breath, coughing and wheezing, show an overall improvement for those practicing Yoga and Pranayam regularly.
Yoga helps in opening the chest muscles and increasing lung capacity. So, it is good for patients suffering from Asthma as it helps them control their breathing and also reduce stress, which are common triggers for symptoms of Asthma. According to a research, there was a 67% reduction in the use of inhalers and a significant reduction in Asthma attacks for those practicing Yoga and Pranayam.
Yogic breathing exercises such as Nadi Shodhan, Bhastrika and Kapal bhati are very helpful in Asthma. Combining Asanas and Pranayam with around 15 minutes of daily meditation can go a long way in relieving the emotional and physical stress which is triggered in Asthma. Among Asanas one can try the following poses —
Ardha Matsyendrasana (Sitting Half Spinal Twist)
Setu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose)
(Img – https://www.gaia.com/article/setu-bandhasana-bridge-pose)
Badhakonasana (Butterfly Pose)
(Img – https://yogamoha.com/yoga-asana-butterfly-pose-badhakonasana/)
Poorvottanasana (Upward Plank Pose)
(img – https://www.artofliving.org/ly-en/yoga/yoga-poses/inclined-plane-pose-poorvottanasana)
Shavasana (Corpse Pose)
(Pic – https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/shavasana)
“Yoga” in sanskrit means union or joining of the lower self with the higher one. Yoga helps in keeping the mind and body in harmony. Practicing Yoga reduces stress, helps in weight loss, increases self-awareness and gives flexibility and strength to the muscles. One must not over stretch during the Yoga poses and attempt as much as the body allows comfortably.
This article is part of a series on the Health Benefits of Yoga.